A Hartford Locksmith Explains the Pros and Cons of Double Cylinder Deadbolts


Pros and Cons of Double Cylinder Deadbolts

When buying locks for your residential or commercial building, you may hear locksmiths talk about double cylinder deadbolts, also called double-sided deadbolts, and single-sided deadbolts. Since you are not an expert in locks and keys, you may not know the difference as well as the pros and cons of double cylinder deadbolts.

According to a Hartford locksmith, ahigh security deadbolt refers to a lock that can’t be manipulated open when engaged fully. A bolt retracts when operated by a key or thumb-turn only. Double cylinder deadbolts are locks that require a key to open from both the inside and outside. On the other hand, single-sided deadbolts require key to unlock from the outside only. Single sided deadbolts have a knob on the inside that is used to unlock and lock them from the inside.

Single cylinder deadbolts are the commonest type in most homes. Generally,the difference between single sided deadbolt and double cylinder deadbolt may seem simple. However, the consequences of your choice can mean all the difference when it comes to ensuring safety of your family, office or home and endangering them. That’s why you should be very keen when choosing between single cylinder deadbolts and double cylinder deadbolts.

Choosing the most ideal lock is crucial. When looking for the best lock to install in your home or business premises, consider the pros and cons of the lock that you choose. Here are the pros and cons of double cylinder deadbolts that you should consider.

Pros of Double Cylinder Deadbolts

High Security

The major benefit of double cylinder deadbolts is that they are designed to offer high security level. This makes doors that have them more difficult for intruders to pick or unlock. Double cylinder deadbolts are the safest choice for homeowners. Although many homeowners go for single-sided deadbolt locks, their security level is not as high as that of double cylinder deadbolts.

If there is a window that burglars can reach with their arm from the door, they can break a window and reach the knob to turn it thereby unlocking the door. Thus, it’s easy for burglars to gain entry when a door with single sided deadbolt is close to a window. Double cylinder deadbolts require keys to open from the inside or outside. Thus, even when an intruder breaks a window that is close to the door, they can’t turn the double cylinder deadbolt open.


Double cylinder deadbolts keep people inside a building safe. This is as important as keeping potential robbers away. You want your loved ones to be safe and feel protected inside your home. This is particularly important for homes with small children as well as families with loved ones that suffer from conditions like dementia. Double cylinder deadbolts require keys to open from the inside and outside. This implies that your loved ones will be secure once you lock a double cylinder deadbolt from the inside or outside. Nevertheless, you should limit access or secure the key for this to work.

Double cylinder deadbolts are ideal for glass sliding windows and doors. That’s because their presence in these entrances ensure that nobody can compromise the security of a house without their keys. Even when somebody breaks a glass, they will need keys to unlock the door from the inside.

Dealing with Naughty Kids is Easy

Replacing a simple latch lock with a single cylinder bolt may seem ideal for the front door of a home that has naughty kids. However, some kids can still be a headache. They can push or turn a button to unlock a door thereby exiting without the knowledge of their parent or guardian. A double cylinder deadbolt on the other hand makes dealing with such naught kids easy. That’s because the kids will need the key to the double cylinder deadbolt to unlock it. Thus, a double cylinder deadbolt lock is ideal for a family that wants to ensure safety and security of naughty kids.

Cons of Double Cylinder Deadbolts

Key Requirement

Although the fact that you need a key to unlock double cylinder deadbolts from the inside and outside is an advantage, it’s also a disadvantage. That’s because the features that make it hard for robbers to break into a building are the same features that make getting out difficult even during an emergency. For instance, if fire erupts in a home that is locked with a double cylinder deadbolt lock, you must locate keys for your double cylinder deadbolts first. That’s because you can’t exit the fire danger without them.

Not Ideal for All Doors

It’s important to note that emergency exit should be easy to access and use without keys. Double cylinder deadbolts are therefore not ideal for emergency exits. Even when the door is considered or designed for use during emergency only, double cylinder deadbolt should not be installed in it.

Illegal in Some States

Before you decide to install double cylinder deadbolts in your building, check the local codes. That’s because double cylinder deadbolts are prohibited in some places due to fire-code restrictions. Essentially, people can be entrapped in a house in the event of an emergency if they don’t have the keys to double cylinder deadbolts. Nevertheless, it’s important to check the local codes in your area to know whether you can still install them.

Generally, these are the major pros and cons of double cylinder deadbolts that you should consider before their installation in your building. It’s important that you talk to an certified locksmith if still unsure whether to install double cylinder deadbolts or single cylinder deadbolts in your property. This will enable you to understand the difference and weigh your options from an informed point of view.

Essentially, you should install double cylinder deadbolts when you have a plan for emergency escape in place. That’s because when a person is overcome by fire or smoke, they may panic and become incapable of operating a lock even when they have a key. That’s why you should talk to a Hartford locksmith about your choice.

A professional Hartford locksmith can also show you the most ideal spots to install double cylinder deadbolts. They can also install the locks for you if you have bought them already.

Erin Emanuel


  1. I found it interesting how you mentioned how double cylinder deadbolt locks keep people safe from potential robbers. My wife and I are currently building a house, and a little bit of added security wouldn’t hurt one bit! I will definitely get in touch with our contractor to let him know of this.

  2. I have a rental house that was just burglarized. The tenant swears the double cylinder deadbolt was lock. The video shows the burglar was at the door for less than a minute. It is hard to believe he picked the doorknob and the deadbolt.
    Question is: Can a double cylinder deadbolt be “picked” and if so how long would it take? Thank you in advance

    • Kathy Taylor: Of course they can. Typical house locks only keep honest people honest. An experience burglar can pick or “bump” a lock in a very quick manner. Dual deadbolts provide no additional protection from that. Really the extra protection comes from them simply breaking the glass on a door and reaching in to unlock the knob/bolt.

  3. I installed a double cylinder lock on my front door and someone picked it and got in. This is my second lock, the first was a single cylinder deadbolt. What lock can I get that would give me some security from robbers?

  4. Lavinia,

    I suggest you go to Doorricade.com and consider buying a Doorricade bar for adding further security to the inside of your door. It will make it impossible for a burglar or someone perpetrating a home invasion to kick in your door. It will also buy you time to call the police or get out of your home via another door or window.

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